Bendigo trainer Shane Fliedner says he has virtually been forced into taking Livigno to Sandown for his second race start after he won a maiden on his home track on debut last month.
The Churchill Downs gelding is engaged in Wednesday’s Sportingbet Hcp (1200m), a rating 0-72 for three-year-olds.
An $80,000 yearling purchase in Melbourne, the grey won by two lengths over 1000m on March 23.
“He went well but it was a pretty poor field and there are not a lot of options these days of where to take these young horses after they win a maiden,” Fliedner said.
“But he’s a nice horse and we’ll just see how he goes up against this better grade.
“I’m sure he’ll run a nice race but will benefit a lot from the run.
“He’s an immature horse but he’s from a good family.”
Livigno is the last foal of the now deceased broodmare Lady Violet, the dam of Group One winner Notoire, stakeswinner Well Known and stakes-placed Tullamarine.
Lady Violet had 18 foals, 14 of them to race and 12 of them winners.
One of her daughters, Springburn, produced the dual stakeswinner Happy Hippy.
Chris Symons, who won on Livigno at Bendigo, rides him again on Wednesday and he also stays with stablemate Likely Lad in The Cove Hotel 0-78 Hcp (1600m).
Symons has ridden Likely Lad to three wins from his last six starts, the latest in a 0-72 Hcp (1300m) at the same Bendigo meeting at which Livigno won.
“He keeps winning every preparation but his ratings have caught up with him,” Fliedner said.
“It’s his right sort of race but he’s got some mixed form at Sandown. Early days he ran a couple of thirds and a fourth placing but he has since run a couple of lasts when we thought we had reasons why but we’ll know once and for all tomorrow.
“I nominated for this Saturday’s Tatura Cup but he was well down the list in the ratings so we decided to take him to Sandown.
“It is not an over-strong race and I’d expect him to do something in it.”
Among Likely Lad’s opposition is former New Zealand galloper Gottino who is unbeaten in three runs since being bought by Ballarat trainer Ken Moore.
Moore, who won the 1990 Duke Of Norfolk Stakes (3200m) – now known as the Andrew Ramsden Stakes – with Lord Westminster, has only one horse in work at a time.
He explained that his son, Melbourne bloodstock agent Shane Moore, negotiated a deal with Brent Gillovic of Highview Stud in New Zealand to buy the Johar four-year-old who had won two races from 13 starts.
Gottino completed a winning hat-trick for Moore when he won a Bendigo rating 0-72 Hcp (1600m) on March 17 following wins at Ballarat and Bendigo.
Jason Benbow, who has ridden the gelding in each of those three wins, retains the mount on Wednesday.